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Classic Vietnam: Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hue & More

Duration
12 Days
Prices From:
US$ 2,401

FIRST-CLASS | PRIVATE-GUIDED: Experience the essential highlights of Vietnam. Travelling north to south, you’ll explore the colonial avenues of Hanoi, cruise beautiful Halong Bay, see imperial treasures in Hue, relax on the beach in Hoi An, and learn about the history of the Vietnam War in Hoi Chi Minh City.


This 12-day Vietnamese vacation takes you across the country from Hanoi to Halong Bay, Hue, Hoi An, and Ho Chi Minh City. It features first-class accommodations and private tours. 

Your journey begins in Hanoi, the Vietnamese capital and one of the most appealing and elegant capitals in Southeast Asia. A full day city tour will showcase the city’s historical landmarks and cultural appeal. During your tour, you’ll visit Ba Dinh Square, home to the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, which contains the embalmed body of the communist leader, the important Buddhist temple of One Pillar Pagoda, the former imperial citadel of Thang Long, your choice of a local museum, and the winding alleys and hidden shops of Hanoi’s Old Quarter. 

From Hanoi, head for the coast and reach Halong Bay, one of the most beautiful bays in the world, known for its thousands of karst islands jutting out of the shimmering waters. You’ll board a traditional junk boat for an overnight cruise on the bay, visiting local caves and grottoes and enjoying the peerless view from the water. Back on the mainland, connect back to Hanoi and fly south to Hue in Central Vietnam.

Hue was once the seat of the Nguyen Dynasty and is home to Vietnam’s greatest imperial treasures. A half day tour will take you through the city and along the Perfume River to explore its rich history and beautiful landmarks. Begin with a cruise along the Perfume River to Thien Mu Pagoda, the tallest religious building in Vietnam, where you’ll disembark to explore for a bit before continuing to the Imperial Citadel, an opulent fortress that was home to royals before Vietnam was colonized, and the Royal Fine Arts Museum, which houses many of the greatest treasures. 

Head along the coastline to Hoi An via the Cloudy Pass, stopping in the fishing village of Lang Co en route. In Hoi An, you’ll head on a walking tour through the old colonial township, which is widely-considered the most beautiful and relaxing resort spot in Vietnam. You’ll stroll alongside beautiful old colonial buildings and through lively markets, while also spotting landmarks such as the 400-year-old Japanese bridge. You’ll have two full days at leisure in Hoi An to relax on the beach and enjoy the pleasures of the township and nearby settlements. In the 1960s, the stretch of beach between Danang and Hoi An was known as “China Beach,” and it continues to be a popular beach haven for locals and travellers alike. 

Head just north to the airport in Danang and fly south to Ho Chi Minh City, the largest city in the country and a sprawling metropolis formerly known as Saigon. A half-day tour will take you across the city to learn about the end of the Vietnam War, as well as Vietnam’s imperial past. During your tour, you’ll visit the Reunification Palace, formerly the Presidential Palace of South Vietnam, the Museum of Vietnamese History, and the Jade Emperor Pagoda, known for its intricate Taoist carvings and enchanting atmosphere. While based in Ho Chi Minh City, you’ll also head outside of the city to explore the Mekong Delta, a lush region of rice paddies, fishing villages, and canals that is the rice bowl of the nation. Another day, visit the Cu Chi Tunnels to see the elaborate network of underground fortifications and passages that allowed the Viet Cong to wage guerilla warfare during the Vietnam War. 

At the end of your stay, connect to the airport in Ho Chi Minh City for your departure. 


 

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Duration
12 Days
Prices From:
US$ 2,401

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Hanoi Airport to City Hotel

Duration40 Minutes

Hanoi La Siesta Hotel Trendy

La Siesta Trendy opened in 2016 and is located just west of Old Town, intended to capture the edginess and buzz of Hanoi. The incorporation of metal, glass and wood gives the hotel a sleek, contemporary feel. La Siesta Trendy offers 70 guestrooms, many of which overlook the eclectic city skyline, with full amenities and include complementary internet. On-site facilities include the La Siesta Trendy Restaurant and Spa.

Meal Plan Full Breakfast
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Hanoi La Siesta Hotel Trendy

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Location View map
  • starstarstarstar

    Hanoi La Siesta Hotel Trendy



    La Siesta Trendy opened in 2016 and is located just west of Old Town, intended to capture the edginess and buzz of Hanoi. The incorporation of metal, glass and wood gives the hotel a sleek, contemporary feel. La Siesta Trendy offers 70 guestrooms, many of …

    La Siesta Trendy opened in 2016 and is located just west of Old Town, intended to capture the edginess and buzz of Hanoi. The incorporation of metal, glass and wood gives the hotel a sleek, contemporary feel. La Siesta Trendy offers 70 guestrooms, many of which overlook the eclectic city skyline, with full amenities and include complementary internet. On-site facilities include the La Siesta Trendy Restaurant and Spa.

    Facilities

    • Airport Transfer
    • Free WiFi
    • Restaurant
    • Spa

    More Details

Day 2

Full Day Hanoi City Tour including Lunch

Visit Ba Dinh Square where silent sentries guard the marble mausoleum in which Ho Chi Minh lies in state. Subject to opening hours, the interior of the mausoleum may be visited. Continue to the modest stilted wooden bungalow where Uncle Ho lived and worked, before visiting Ho Chi Minh Museum. Dedicated to the 'father of the country', the museum chronicles the evolution of Vietnamese independence.

French architecture features prominently in Hanoi and the nearby former Governor's Residence is a fine example. Continue to the One Pillar Pagoda, a Buddhist pagoda with a history steeped in folklore. The final stop is the Thang Long Royal Citadel, a UNESCO World Heritage Site built in the 11th century during the Ly Viet Dynasty. This important historical site served as the capital of Vietnam for eight centuries.

Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before continuing your exploration of the city, resplendent with French colonial architecture including the exquisite, Opera House. Pass Hoan Kiem Lake, also known as the 'Lake of the Restored Sword' after the legend that surrounds it, en-route to one of the city's many fascinating museums: choose from History Museum, Military Museum, Hoa Loa Prison or Fine Arts, depending on your personal interests. Continue to the Temple of Literature, a serene retreat from the busy streets outside. Built in 1070 and dedicated to Confucius, it became Vietnam's first university.

The best way to experience Hanoi's Old Quarter is on foot and next, take a walking tour through an area of the city known as '36 Streets'. The oldest continuously developed area of Vietnam, this densely populated section of Hanoi was once an important centre of commerce where goods were sold on the street name of a particular guild. The labyrinthine alleyways are perfect for exploring on foot with names such as Sugar Street, Tin Street and Paper Street.

Duration8 Hours
Day 3

Hanoi to Halong

Depart Hanoi early this morning for Halong City (approximately three-and-a-half hours' drive). Upon arrival, transfer to the pier and board a traditional junk boat. A delicious lunch will be served as you begin cruising through emerald waters, past rocky islets and lush islands. Halong Bay is blessed with numerous grottoes, hidden pools and mystical islands, and this afternoon there will be the chance to disembark the boat and explore the region further (off-boat excursions are usually made by the ship's tender). Visits to nearby caves or sandy beaches may also be on the agenda. Or you might choose to simply remain on board and take in the glorious scenery from the spacious sundeck. As night falls, the boat will drop anchor in a peaceful spot. Enjoy a refreshing drink before sitting down to a leisurely dinner, served either on deck or inside the dining room depending on weather conditions.

Meal Plan Lunch and Dinner
Duration1 Night
Accommodation

Bhaya Classic Line

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    Bhaya Classic Line



    Launching its first cruise back in the summer of 2007, Bhaya Classic Cruises is a member of what is now Halong Bay's largest fleet of cruise boats & ships. The 4 Bhaya Classic boats are constructed in a classic, oriental style, while incorporating modern facilities …

    Launching its first cruise back in the summer of 2007, Bhaya Classic Cruises is a member of what is now Halong Bay's largest fleet of cruise boats & ships. The 4 Bhaya Classic boats are constructed in a classic, oriental style, while incorporating modern facilities catering to every aspect of passenger comfort.

    Each Bhaya Classic boat has between 15 and 20 cabins, the relatively small design creating informal, warm spaces promoting a convivial feel on board. A refurbishment programme carried out in August 2015 has given the boats a fresh new look.

    The Bhaya Classic boats are wooden boats constructed in the traditional oriental style long favoured by shipbuilders in this area. The construction material and style of the boats give them a classic feel which sets them apart from most cruise vessels around the world. On board, you will find atmospheric spaces which speak of the heritage design, and the small boat concept encourages a cosy feel which makes a Bhaya Classic cruise a pleasantly social affair. The colour scheme on board is a fusion of the rich browns of hardwood, white, and turquoise blue trim with red highlights. The wooden furniture on board only heightens the sense of timeless elegance which seems a natural extension of Halong Bay itself.

    Facilities

    • Bar
    • Spa
    • Sundeck

    More Details

Day 4

Halong to Hanoi

Rise early to admire the sunrise, then enjoy a light breakfast before disembarking the boat for further exploration. On the return journey to port, brunch will be served as you continue to take in extraordinary views of Halong Bay. Arriving back into port mid-morning, you will be met by a driver and transferred back to your hotel in Hanoi. Lunch will be served in a local restaurant.

Meal Plan Breakfast and Lunch

City Hotel to Hanoi Airport

Duration40 Minutes

Hanoi Airport to Hue Airport

Duration0 Minutes

Hue Airport to City Hotel

Duration30 Minutes

Saigon Morin Hotel

Built in 1901 by French, the Saigon Morin Hotel is the oldest hotel in Hue City, Vietnam. Survived through many wars, this is more than a Hotel, it's a part of the History of Hue city in the last 100 years. Now lovingly restored to its century-old glory, Saigon Morin Hotel is once ready to live up to its reputation as the choice of celebrities, intrepid adventures and businessmen. The Hotel offers everything a discerning traveller would expect form a world class hotel without sacrificing the old world charm that made the Saigon Morin Hotel legendary.

Meal Plan Full Breakfast
Duration2 Nights
Accommodation

Saigon Morin Hotel

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Location View map
  • starstarstarstar

    Saigon Morin Hotel



    Built in 1901 by French, the Saigon Morin Hotel is the oldest hotel in Hue City, Vietnam. Survived through many wars, this is more than a Hotel, it's a part of the History of Hue city in the last 100 years. Now lovingly restored to …

    Built in 1901 by French, the Saigon Morin Hotel is the oldest hotel in Hue City, Vietnam. Survived through many wars, this is more than a Hotel, it's a part of the History of Hue city in the last 100 years. Now lovingly restored to its century-old glory, Saigon Morin Hotel is once ready to live up to its reputation as the choice of celebrities, intrepid adventures and businessmen. The Hotel offers everything a discerning traveller would expect form a world class hotel without sacrificing the old world charm that made the Saigon Morin Hotel legendary.

    Facilities

    • Bar(s)
    • Concierge
    • Conference Facilities
    • Daycare/Babysitting Service
    • Gift Shop
    • Gym/Fitness Centre
    • Hair/Beauty Salon
    • Internet Access
    • Lounge(s)
    • Massage Treatments
    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant(s)
    • Room Service
    • Sauna
    • Spa

    More Details

    Preferred Hotel
Day 5

Half Day Perfume River Cruise to Thien Mu Pagoda and Imperial Citadel With Lunch

This excursion begins with an interesting boat ride along the Perfume River to the Thien Mu Pagoda. Consisting of seven stories, the pagoda is the tallest religious building in Vietnam and within its grounds is the Austin car in which Thich Quang Duc, a Buddhist monk who demonstrated against the South Vietnamese government during the Vietnam War, was driven to Saigon prior to his widely reported self-immolation in 1963.

Continue to the Imperial Citadel. Built between 1804 and 1833, this heavily fortified structure is still very much the heart of modern-day Hue and despite a chequered history, the fortress remains superbly intact. There will be time for exploration before moving on to Long An Palace. Situated outside the citadel walls and only reopened to the public in 2012 after four years of extensive renovation, this baroque-influenced palace is now home to the Royal Fine Arts Museum. Inside this highly rated museum are several thousand antiquities including porcelain, silverware and paintings, many of which belonged to the emperors of the Nguyen Dynasty.

Duration4 Hours
Day 6

Hue to Hoi An With Visit To Lang Co Village En-route

Depart Hue and travel overland to Hoi An via Cloudy Pass, with a visit to the idyllic fishing village of Lang Co en-route.

Duration3 Hours

Boutique Hoi An Resort

Explore the rich heritage of Hoi An at Boutique Hoi An Resort and discover authentic Vietnamese cuisine and hospitality. The Boutique Hoi An Resort offers a variety of unique facilities and services. A large swimming pool surrounded by a tropical garden forms the centrepiece of the resort. The Hoi An spa is located next to the pool, and provides a haven for pure relaxation and rejuvenation. The resort is ideally located on Cua Dai Beach, only 5 minutes from Hoi An centre, 35 minutes from the airport and 30 minutes from the town of Da Nang.

Meal Plan Full Breakfast
Duration3 Nights
Accommodation

Boutique Hoi An Resort

More Info

Location View map
  • starstarstarstar

    Boutique Hoi An Resort



    Explore the rich heritage of Hoi An at Boutique Hoi An Resort and discover authentic Vietnamese cuisine and hospitality. The Boutique Hoi An Resort offers a variety of unique facilities and services. A large swimming pool surrounded by a tropical garden forms the centrepiece of …

    Explore the rich heritage of Hoi An at Boutique Hoi An Resort and discover authentic Vietnamese cuisine and hospitality. The Boutique Hoi An Resort offers a variety of unique facilities and services. A large swimming pool surrounded by a tropical garden forms the centrepiece of the resort. The Hoi An spa is located next to the pool, and provides a haven for pure relaxation and rejuvenation. The resort is ideally located on Cua Dai Beach, only 5 minutes from Hoi An centre, 35 minutes from the airport and 30 minutes from the town of Da Nang.

    Facilities

    • Bar(s)
    • Business Centre
    • Conference Facilities
    • Daycare/Babysitting Service
    • Gym/Fitness Centre
    • Internet Access
    • Laundry/Dry Cleaning Service
    • Lounge(s)
    • Massage Treatments
    • Pool (s)
    • Restaurant(s)
    • Spa
    • Swim-up Bar

    More Details

Half Day Hoi An Walking Tour - Afternoon

Located 30KM south of Danang, the sublime riverside town of Hoi An is a feast for the eyes. Devoid of most forms of motorised transport, the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Old Town of this ancient port is ideal for exploring on foot. Discover beautifully preserved old merchant houses, atmospheric temples and lively markets as you stroll through the back streets of this enchanting destination. You will visit the iconic 400-year-old Japanese Bridge and the busy waterfront, where colourful fishing boats bob up and down on the Thu Bon River. There will also be time to peruse the numerous boutiques and galleries that line the narrow streets and perhaps make a purchase or two. During the walk, a quick visit at the market to find out well-known local cakes in Hoi An market such as Banh It la Gai or Banh Dau Xanh.

Duration3 Hours
Day 7

Day at Leisure

Today is totally free and at leisure. You can take advantage of any optional activities available or simply relax.

Day 8

Day at Leisure

Today is totally free and at leisure. You can take advantage of any optional activities available or simply relax.

Day 9

Hoi An to Danang Airport

Duration45 Minutes

Da Nang Airport to Ho Chi Minh City Airport

Duration0 Minutes

Ho Chi Minh Saigon Airport to City Hotel

Duration45 Minutes

Liberty Central Saigon Riverside Hotel

Located along the active Saigon River, the Liberty Central Saigon Riverside Hotel provides a romantic, tranquil vibe within an easy walk of many of the city's prominent landmarks. This award-winning hotel offers 170 comfortable, stylish rooms with city or river views. Facilities include an entire floor dedicated to health and wellness, swimming pool, in-house bistro, sky bar and restaurant.

Meal Plan Full Breakfast
Duration3 Nights
Accommodation

Liberty Central Saigon Riverside Hotel

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Location View map
  • starstarstarstar

    Liberty Central Saigon Riverside Hotel



    Located along the active Saigon River, the Liberty Central Saigon Riverside Hotel provides a romantic, tranquil vibe within an easy walk of many of the city's prominent landmarks. This award-winning hotel offers 170 comfortable, stylish rooms with city or river views. Facilities include an entire …

    Located along the active Saigon River, the Liberty Central Saigon Riverside Hotel provides a romantic, tranquil vibe within an easy walk of many of the city's prominent landmarks. This award-winning hotel offers 170 comfortable, stylish rooms with city or river views. Facilities include an entire floor dedicated to health and wellness, swimming pool, in-house bistro, sky bar and restaurant.

    More Details

Half Day Saigon City Tour including Presidential Palace and History Museum

Beginning in the centre of the city, the first stop on today's itinerary is Reunification Palace. Formerly named the Presidential Palace, this important city landmark was assured its place in history on 30th April 1975, when the first North Vietnamese tanks rumbled past, signalling the Fall of Saigon and ultimately the end of the Vietnam War. Now a museum complete with period meeting areas, war rooms and a basement communication centre, after your visit, walk the short distance to Notre Dame Cathedral. At the centre of HCMC's government district, this romantic church dates back to the late 19th century and is a popular backdrop for wedding photographs. Across the street from the cathedral is the city's striking French colonial-era post office, whilst Hotel de Ville de Saigon, officially Ho Chi Minh City Hall, is another of the city's more prominent buildings. The Museum of Vietnamese History is housed in yet another fine example of Sino-French architecture. Dating back to the 1920s, it contains an excellent series of exhibits dating from the Bronze Age to the Nguyen dynasty, the last ruling family of Vietnam.

As an alternative to the Museum of Vietnamese History, visit the elegant Fine Arts Museum with its impressive collection of ancient and modern art and sculptures, or the War Remnants Museum, which is primarily dedicated to the Vietnam War but also includes exhibits dating back to the French colonialist period and the first Indochina War.

The final stop today is the unforgettable Jade Emperor Pagoda. With the pungent smell of incense hanging heavy in the air and an interior packed full of ornate carvings and fierce-looking statues, this Taoist temple is one of the most atmospheric places of worship in the city. Transfer back to your hotel after your visit or alternatively be dropped off at Ben Thanh market for personal exploration and a spot of souvenir hunting.

Duration4 Hours
Day 10

Mekong Delta Full Day Tour with Lunch

The Mekong Delta is a rich fertile region of farmland interlaced with countless waterways and crisscrossed by low-lying rice paddies. Today you will explore one of the country's most enchanting landscapes travelling by car to the Delta town of Cai Be before boarding the Cai Be Princess, a traditional bamboo-covered wooden boat.

After two hours drive to Cai Be from Ho Chi Minh city, the visitors are getting on board of a motorised boat to take a breeze drive in Mekong river. At Tan Phong Islet, board a small row boat to better explore the canal's hidden mangroves. On the island, visit an ancient Mandarin house dating from the 19th century where several generations of the same family live together. You will also visit some interesting home factories to see how local products such as coconut candy and puffed rice (the local equivalent of popcorn) are made, and learn about the drying process for longan fruit, another cottage industry in the Delta. Lunch awaits you at Le Longanier, a superb Indochinese villa located in a lush tropical garden by the river and surrounded by fruit orchards. Following lunch and a short walk along a beautiful canal, you reach Ba Bon bridge at around 3:30 PM for your transfer back to Ho Chi Minh City.

Duration9 Hours
Day 11

Half Day Cu Chi Tunnels Tour

Synonymous with the Vietnam War and a testament to the determined spirit of the Vietnamese, the underground network of passages at Cu Chi is a fascinating day trip out of the city.

Work on the tunnels began during the war against the French in the 1940s and over the next 25 years as the conflict with America escalated, they were improved and expanded to create an underground city of meeting areas, storerooms, living quarters and much more. The tunnels allowed the Viet Cong to control a vital area of South Vietnam and at their height, extended for more than 200KM in length and stretched from what was then Saigon to the Cambodian border.

Preserved as a memorial park, a small section of this remarkable network is open to the public and there is the option to go below the surface to visit the tunnel first hand. There is plenty of interest above ground as well and it is recommended to bring good footwear, sunscreen and a hat. Please note you may get a little dusty if you decide to go underground.

Duration5 Hours
Day 12

City Hotel to Ho Chi Minh Saigon Airport

Duration45 Minutes

Other Information

DEPARTURES:

Daily

PRICE INCLUDES:

  • Private arrival and departure airport transfers
  • 2 nights first-class accommodations in Hanoi
  • 1 night first-class cruise accommodation on Halong Bay
  • 2 nights first-class accommodations in Hue
  • 3 nights first-class accommodations in Hoi An
  • 3 nights first-class accommodations in Ho Chi Minh City
  • Domestic flights (economy class) and taxes as per itinerary
  • Private transfers and transportation
  • Private-guided touring with an English-speaking guide
  • Entrance fees
  • Breakfast daily (excluding day 1), 5 lunches, 1 dinner

PRICE EXCLUDES:

  • Travel insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Meals and beverages not mentioned
  • Gratuities
  • Items of a personal nature

TERMS AND CONDITIONS:

Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please inquire.

OTHER INFORMATION:

This itinerary can also be done in the reverse starting in Ho Chi Minh and ending in Hanoi. 

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19 Sep 2022
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